Kaliyuga The Age Of Darkness - 7 in English Novel Episodes by Vicky Trivedi books and stories PDF | Kaliyuga The Age Of Darkness (Chapter 7)

Kaliyuga The Age Of Darkness (Chapter 7)

7

WATER CHANNEL

 

[As the Avatar, I will help poor people. As Lord Kalki, I will help them. That is what I will take birth for. That is my work as Avatar. Allow me to do it. Stand by me. Those who stand by the avatar are devotees. As Krishna, I’ve said: I’ve come to save my devotees. It was not partiality. I came to save the virtuous. So if you want me among you, if you want me to fight for you, you have to be pure-hearted.]

 

The wind outside Daxa’s hut is dry as always, carrying sand from the nearby semi-desert. The sun is overhead announcing I’ve more than six hours for preparation till train comes.

The train comes three or four times in a year, it drops tired labourers that have joined work beyond the wall before and takes new workers who work for months till previous workers take rest or do whatever they like.

I wonder why the train comes at night. No one has seen it coming during the daytime. Anyway, I’ve never seen it in dark too. No one is allowed in the station before reaching the age of worker – sixteen.

Nirbhaya comes by train to maintain discipline on the train, a troop of them comes on the train. Devatas believe we are undisciplined. Sunya that’s they call us, thinking that we don’t know the purpose of our life. I think we’ve no purpose of life except laboring in their construction work or being killed by Nirbhayas.

Killing is prohibited beyond the wall. No one can kill anyone – not even killing of a Sunya is allowed there. But they have a way to kill us when any of us denies accepting what they say.

Have you heard the proverb ‘Give a Dog an ill Name, and he'll soon be hanged’?

They give us an ill name – Rakshasa- and killing of Rakshasa is not only allowed but praiseworthy act in beyond the wall.

I stroll in our area, I’m about to leave it for three months or maybe longer than it or maybe for forever.

This happens often – many of Sunyas never returns from beyond the wall – the construction work there is dangerous. When one of Sunyas does not return his family asks the remaining of his companions and they say – Accident happens.

Only two uncompassionate words on the death of a Sunya – nothing else. And what else we need – dry wood to burn the dead body. We have plenty of dry trees in the dead-forest in the west.

Once I have asked my father why they send the dead bodies back. Why they do not burn it there? Answer from my father has shocked me – their crimson place is holy. We aren’t allowed to burn our bodies there. It spoils their holiness.

Holy cow!

Incomprehensible holiness they possess!

Fuck their holiness! I curse, only in my mind; these words are enough to announce me a Rakshasa if anyone of Nirbhayas hears. They don’t need anything else to behead me.

Almost, half an hour I stroll in our semi-desert are, dotted with huts of different sizes but the same materials. Our streets aren’t much broad, we don’t need broad streets. My father says streets in beyond the wall are broad and covered with a black material named asphalt, so smooth, so vast, almost clean and the most wonderful they are illuminated during the night.

They’ve something magical to illuminate their streets, they call them bulbs, they’ve arranged that magical things in the station. Nowhere In-the-wall except the station such facilities we can see. I haven’t seen bulb yet but now I will see.

When I have asked my father why they’ve broad streets he has answered – they need it for cars and motorcycles.

And what are car and motorcycle? A poor question has fallen from my mouth.

“Things incomprehensible like the train. They run on the road like the train runs on the tracks.”

“How?” I have asked, “With coal?”

“No diesel and petrol?”

“Now what are these diesel and petrol?”

“I can’t tell you all,” my father has irritated, “you see when you come beyond the wall with me.”

And today I am going – beyond the wall. I will see all these cars, motorcycles, bulbs, and broad streets.

My leg aches by walking and my heart pains by observing the ruin of Pralaya, done before 500 years.

Why Pralaya comes?

We have the answer – we lost trust in the books and the creator so it came. Beyond the wall they believe we’re responsible for Pralaya – it had come for us.

I can’t believe it.

If so – why we aren’t allowed books? If we don’t read them now Pralaya would come again. Why they banned books from us?

Then the creator – people believe he is immortal – he is before Pralaya but I don’t.

How?

Before the Pralay why people follow a man or why they give him a name as the creator? What would he have created before Pralaya?

After the next half hour, I’m out of area dotted with huts. I’m near the forest. I know where to go to say goodbye to Padhma.

Padhma is my friend.

MY GIRLFRIEND.

We love each other but we’ve not proposed yet. We both know we love each other but we’ve not expressed it by words. I want to tell her that I love her but I can’t. She is the only breadwinner in her family. Her father has died when he was beyond the wall working in construction work for the creator. Some say her father was a thief and the spy had caught him and he is still alive in the cell of the PATANAGAR. I don’t know what the truth is.

The news of her father’s death has snatched all senses from her mother. She is alive but like a dead body. She isn’t able to earn bread for her family. That’s why Padhma always spends time at the water channel. She is also a secret student of my teacher. She is also a conversant, having knowledge of books and able to read and write.

My teacher teaches us reading and writing secretly. We’ve to hide this fact even from my people as my people are superstitious and they believe if we’ll break the rules which Devatas have made for us Pralaya would come again. So we conversant learn it secretly.

Knowledge is also banned for us, and most of my people think it’s nothing but a disease. Devatas say that even before Pralaya we weren’t allowed books. They say that old Good have killed many of our people who had tried to learn. I don’t believe all this. They say it’s written in old books but I think they have changed real books. Old Gods were kind and they couldn’t do that.

Things are always as good as God's grace till you don’t have knowledge – my people say. In-wall we are forced to believe that in the old days, the dark days, people were unaware that how dangerous the knowledge is. For a long duration, people believed knowledge as a good thing. They tend to celebrate and pursue it. Of course, that's one of the reasons it's so dangerous. It controls your mind so that you cannot think on your own, or make decisions for your own well-being. Once you have the knowledge it controls your every decision and each emotion. Knowledge manipulates your mind. That’s why you can’t find it in yourself and instead, it shows you other diseases in your body, stress, anger, anxiety, depression, violence, wish to get more, and the most dangerous love. You start to love everything and everyone once you have the knowledge and that ruins your life. You can’t live after you lose someone you love and everything inside you shatters and finally, it makes you one like inanimate. In fact, we should stay away from the knowledge and love automatically stays away from us.

On the other hand, we conversant don’t believe these things. We believe knowledge makes us totally free from discrimination and pain. My teacher says though people believe knowledge isn’t useful for them they aren’t totally free from it. It still moves around them with invisible, inaudible, but affecting them.  My teacher says he's seen countless people having knowledge but they are unaware of it.

He says several years ago people had the knowledge of everything and that’s why they were free.

I’m, conversant, of course, I have the knowledge. I wonder whether the knowledge is harmful or not. But I’m sure about one thing. It hurts. It makes you feel what others can’t. It's hard to be conversant. If you are a conversant, not only your but others pain also haunt you and you never can live happily. It's hard not to feel pain for others; it’s hard not to love everyone while you’re conversant. My teacher says once the knowledge has touched you, it turns you into conversant.

Still, I worry. Because my teacher himself says that in the old days, Knowledge drove people to madness and anger. It made people jealous. It made them inhuman. The knowledge is dangerous if you don’t have enough. The half-knowledge is bad enough. The old books also tell stories of those who killed people, who try to gain power, who try to trample poor, who try to win over the world, who try to be in power, because of half-knowledge. This world’s all suffering is due to half-knowledge.

Knowledge is deadliest in every condition except two: When you have a whole and when you don't a bit of it.

But we conversant believe one day we’ll have the whole knowledge. My teacher says we should be guard till we reach its peak otherwise it kills us.

Padhma has chosen to learn books about herbs and she roams in the forest to find different plants and herbs described in the books she reads and finds cures for many diseases. She helps people with her herbs when anyone is ill. She can heal common fever in just a day by her herbs.

No one knows but I know why she has chosen the book of herbs. She has chosen it to heal her mother’s mental illness.

To earn bread for the family she has her own way. The way no Sunya will prefer but she. My people like fish as their meal or dinner. Where the channel ends and water of the channel flow freely in the forest we can find a crowd of people to get fish from free water as it slows there in the open area. People stay there to gather fish before the wild animals get them but the spot is always crowded and nowadays each of crowd hardly gets five or six fish if they spend hours there.

But Padhma has her own way to get fish – the way which only a fearless would prefer. But she is a conversant and she can act beyond the limit of the Sunya. She jumps in the channel and gets fish. It’s risky and I’ve warned her not to do so but she never listens to me.

So the matter is that her mother needs her and I can’t tell her to marry me. We are allowed to choose girl after sixteen and now I’m sixteen and she’ll be sixteen after some months but I know she won’t leave her mother. We’re friends since childhood and I’ve heard her tilling she won’t leave her mother, no matter to do so she’ll have to remain unmarried since her life.

When I reach the water channel as I’ve expected Padhma is swimming inside the channel and Atul is standing near the channel wall and collecting the fish thrown out by her in a basket.

Atul is one of our childhood friends. If Padhma isn’t with her mother means she is with me or with Atul. He is her best friend. They have a good partnership in business. Padhma and he get fish whole day and then Atul sells them in farmer’s market and gets a necessary thing for both of them. Trading is prohibited in the wall. Only traders have the right to trade in the wall. They come in the wall once in a year and sell things for a month in exchange of coal which my people have gathered from the mine, diamonds, some metal dug out by my people, the product we have gathered from the forest. We are only allowed to earn coins by selling them our things but some dare to sell inside the wall, among our people.

Atul risks doing trading, not openly but secretly. He has some customers who are rich in the wall, like the men working as sweepers in the station, men working as labours of the traders when there is the fair in the wall. They have enough to buy fish and they never need to hunt or go to collect fish. The most important – they never starve and their huts have some good facilities, their kitchens full of edible stuff.

“Hi,” Atul says, “what are you doing?” he smiled, “Are we going to get the third partner in business?”

Atul is stronger than me in outlook. He has muscles over his muscles. Like his father, he is a fan of running and doing various exercises. He has no colour but his face is beautiful, perhaps due to long chick bone and thick hair over his head. He wears them in one-side style.

“No,” I smile back, “I’m going to beyond the wall so I’m here to say you goodbye, friends.”

“Padhma,” he shouts, “something more important than fish is out of the channel.”

“I’m coming,” she shouts back, “I heard him.”

She comes out.  She is thin but her body is strong. Swimming is the best exercise according to her and she is right that has made her body well shaped and beautiful. Her face is as long as her mother and her eyes are big like her father.

Her clothes are wet and clung to her body, making her more beautiful.

“You talk,” Atul says, “I’m going to sell. The farmer’s market will be closed after the dark, I have to find customers.”

“Okay,” I say him, “hurry, or you have to risk in the Black market.”

He hugs me before leaving and advises me to be calm and good beyond the wall as he knows I’m an angry young man. I don’t know why but my people think I’ve more anger than I should’ve - more than any Sunya should’ve.

“Samrat,” she releases knot of her hair and hangs them loosely over her shoulder to dry them, “you are going.”

“Hum.” I say, “You know I don’t…”

“Hush…” she puts her first finger over my mouth, my lips filling coldness of her skin.  It’s cold by water. “Don’t be like that.”

“I’ve no control over myself,” I say, “believe me I’ve never wished to be like that but I’m not like others and I don’t know why.”

“I know,” she says, “you are different than others because you are the Avatar.” My parents, my teacher and all conversant knows and believes I’m Avatar of Lord Kalki. Rest of my people doesn’t know this. My parents say if they know there will be problems so we’ve to hide it from all.

“I’m not the Avatar,” I say, “If I were we will be living happy lives not miserable as slaves.”

“That’s what you should understand,” she takes my hand in her, “when the time will come, the prophecies will appear. You will get eight powers, your white immortal horse and a sword named Ratna Meru.”

“And how do you know?” I say, “This is all superstition of us.”

“No, this isn’t,” her voice has a hint of firmness, “one day people beyond the wall will know you as The Apocalyptic Horse Rider, just the matter is of time.”

“Okay, we will see it,” I say.

“We’ll but promise me you don’t do anything before you get eight powers,” she says, “promise me.”

“I promise,” I say. I don't like to hear I’m the avatar. I don’t like to think that I'm not one of my people, not like my parents but something else. The fact I’m not like people walking around me makes me frustrated.

I don’t think I’m the avatar but sometimes I can feel something strange running through my blood. Sometimes I swear I can feel it flowing in my veins like something strong, like the light. It makes me feel godlike. It reminds me of about the great persons I’ve read from books. It reminds me of the resistance, of the fight, of the last stand people had against the Creator before Pralaya.

“Your voice isn’t convincing your words.”

“My heart doesn’t want to wait for powers,” I say, “and I don’t think I would’ve one day.” My voice is emotional.

“That’s what I fear of,” her voice is sad, “promise me if you love me,” she looks directly into my eyes, “Do you love me?”

“I don’t know I love you or not,”

“Oh! That is so.”

“Yes, Padhma, I’m a Sunya and I don’t know what love is.” I say, “All I know is that when I’m, alone I want to be with you.”

“And?” her face becomes mischievous and it reminds me of a dream I’ve about her, about my wedding with her. In it, she’s standing under the canopy of the tree against her hut. In her hand is flowers of white lotus and in her hair is a pink lotus. I'm holding hands with her, but then I think about having children and the dream shatters like the earthen plate when it slips from my hand. If my children are only to work beyond the work and live as slaves of the Creator why should I bring them in the world? That’s why I’ve never told her about my dream.

“And what?” she asks again, “are you daydreaming?”

“No, no.” I say, “And when I’ve any question I want to ask you it before I ask it to anyone else.”

“And?”

“When I’m with you my heart beats steadily in my chest and it always beat out in the same rhythm of your heart, no skips or jumps or swirls or goes faster, just beats as it should beat.”

I look away at the channel and continue.

“And I want you never need to jump in the channel and risk your life for food.” I say, taking both her hands in mine, “that’s why I want to end of the rule of the creator. I don’t want my people to go beyond the wall to work in dangerous places.”

“It’ll end one day,” she says, “You just need the patience.”

“I’ve. I’m learning and getting as much knowledge as I can.”

“Still we need more books.” She says, “Once we’ll have all books of the knowledge we’ll be no longer the Sunyas.”

I nod, “I’m here to say you goodbye,” I say, “I have to go now. The mist is coming and the train waits for none.”

“I know.” she says, “Goodbye and, take care of yourself.”

“I will,” I say, “bye Padhma.”

“Do you know what I feel when you are with me?” she asks.

“Don’t know.” I admit, “How can I know?”

“I feel Safe, secure and free from every pain.”  She is crying, without a sound.

I see a tear slipping down her cheek and she brushes it away so quickly I almost don’t know if it was there, but it was. It was.

“Come back alive.” She says. The best promise we take from our loved ones. And now another tear slips on her skin, and before it reaches her upper lip it’s gone as quickly as the first.

“I’ll,” I say, “I’ll come back, I promise.”

She doesn’t speak but her eyes are full of tears that I wonder if she can see anything. But she does not look away from my face means she can see, through the curtain of tears.

I am not used to seeing her suffer. I turn away.

As I walk away my heart is beating so loudly I can hear it, and I'm positive that if I will stay more she will hear it, too. I didn't even know a heart could beat so loudly. Among sound of my heart beats, I hear her saying goodbye with sobs but I can’t dare to look back.

***

To be continue.....

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